Old English Poetry Essay

677 Words May 14th, 2013 3 Pages
Old English Poetry
Short Notes:

1. Beowulf - It is the conventional title of an Old English heroic epic poem consisting of 3182 alliterative long lines, set in Scandinavia, commonly cited as one of the most important works of Anglo-Saxon literature. It survives in a single manuscript known as the Nowell Codex. Its composition by an anonymous Anglo-Saxon poet is dated between the 8th and the early 11th century.

In the poem, Beowulf, a hero of the Geats in Scandinavia, comes to the help of Hrothgar, the king of the Danes, whose mead hall (Heorot) has been under attack by a being known as Grendel. After Beowulf slays him, Grendel's mother attacks the hall and is then also defeated. Victorious, Beowulf goes home to Geatland in
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The author & date of composition of the poem is unknown, but it probably belonged to the 4th century with some parts added later. In the poem, the minstrel recounts the places & people he visited and met. The poem is divided into three 'catalogues', so-called ‘thulas’. The first thula runs through a list of the various kings of renown, the second thula contains the names of the peoples the narrator visited, and, finally, in the third and final thula, the narrator lists the heroes of myth and legend that he has visited 3. Lament Of Deor – Deor’s Lament is an Old English poem found in the Exeter Book, a manuscript of Old English poetry compiled in the late 10th century. The poem consists of the lament of the scop Deor, who lends his name to the poem, which was given no formal title. The poem consists of 42 alliterative lines.
In the poem, Deor's lord has replaced him. Deor mentions various figures from Germanic mythology and reconciles his own troubles with the troubles these figures faced, ending each section with the refrain "that passed away, so may this." The refrain could mean one of two things - first, that remedy came about, one way or another, in each situation, or, alternatively, that the continuous flow of time (a favourite Anglo-Saxon topic) erases all pain (though not necessarily healing all

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